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The Number One Reason Most Resumes Fail to Land an Interview


(and it’s why you won’t get a great job offer either)

I review a lot of resumes. Sometimes it’s through my own service and sometimes through a large university sub-contracting job. Most – up to 99% I would say – suffer from the same failure: they don’t communicate value.

Value is defined as “The regard that something is held to deserve; the importance or preciousness of something: ‘your support is of great value’.”

Does your resume deserve regard? Does it convey the importance of your work? How does one communicate regard, importance, preciousness, as the definition states?

The answer is both simple and complex. You simply need to understand the reader’s buying motivators. What does the reader/recruiter need to hear in order to “buy” your service through a salary? What gets the recruiter excited?

It’s all related to the bottom line: how your performance affects profitability or reputation.

This makes sense as business is driven by profits (with not-for-profits such as social work, teaching, medical arts being driven more by reputation).

How has your work made your employer viable and sustainably profitable?

Thus far you’ve been given a lot of questions to answer, and it is up to you to answer these. Without a clear understanding of how YOUR work impacts your employer’s viability, you’re not going to write a resume that communicates value, nor are you going to reply to interview questions (if you land one, that is) that put you squarely at the top. That’s where the complexity comes in.

In continuing with a theme of questions, here are a few that will get you started. Ask yourself:

  • What falls apart if I am not here for a week or two?
  • Which skill in particular has my boss commended me for?
  • Do others come to me for help or advice on something in particular?
  • Have I been formally recognized for a contribution, idea, talent?

It’s up to YOU to manage your career, but it doesn’t mean you can’t seek help. Although many can write a “decent” resume, plain old decent doesn’t cut it these days!

Watch for more advice on effective resume writing.  Submitted by Stephanie Clark, whose own career goal is to take resumes from “ho-hum” to “wow”!

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